The cost of disorganization isn’t just financial — it can also affect productivity and decision-making. A study by IDC finds that document-related work accounts for 21.3% of lost productivity.
That means time spent chasing down or recreating documents that go missing. To put that into perspective, every five workdays, workers spend one full day hunting for information or redoing work.
Excel has long been the go-to software for organizing and analyzing data. Its comprehensive formulas and tables have become a staple in many businesses and organizations. However, its costs and limited organizational features make it less than ideal for many agency use cases.
Below, we’ll look into Excel alternatives that offer more comprehensive feature sets that agencies can get more value out of.
Teamwork.com is an all-in-one project management tool that goes beyond just organizing data. It allows teams to collaborate, communicate, and streamline their workflow in one platform.
Built by agency owners for agencies, Teamwork.com offers advanced features like task assignments, team calendars, and time tracking. It has a timesheet feature that lets team members log their hours, and the system automatically calculates billable time.
While Excel primarily only focuses on data organization, your agency can use Teamwork.com’s multiple project views to track progress and productivity at a glance.
Some outstanding features of Teamwork.com include:
Advanced project management
Resource management tool to avoid overlaps and duplications in tasks
User-friendly interface and compatibility with different operating systems.
Streamlined workflow for improved productivity.
Comprehensive project management features
Can manage complex projects
Advanced reporting capabilities
Some of the advanced features may not be suitable for small teams that don’t need as many bells and whistles
Teamwork.com has a Free Forever plan and three paid options depending on the features your agency needs. The Deliver plan costs $9.99/month and, at $19.99/month, you get the most popular Grow plan. There's also the Scale plan, which comes with custom pricing options.
2. Google Sheets
Google Sheets is a free web-based spreadsheet program offered by Google as part of their Office suite productivity tools. Similar to Excel in functionality, it allows users to create, edit, and manage spreadsheets online while collaborating with other users in real time.
Google Sheets stands out due to its seamless integration with Google's ecosystem, including Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Forms. It’s also famous for its sharing and collaboration features, enabling multiple users to work on a spreadsheet simultaneously.
Some key features of Google Sheets include:
Gives a history of previous changes
Offline editing capabilities
Data visualization and analysis tools
Real-time collaboration and sharing capabilities
Seamless integration with other Google tools
Easy transition for Excel users due to similar formulas and functions
Not great at processing large datasets and complex calculations
Difficult to know who edited the spreadsheet unless they comment
Google Sheets is a free tool available to anyone with a Google account, which offers 15 GB of storage for free. Users can also purchase additional storage at varying prices depending on their needs. But if you opt for an enterprise account, you pay $6/month.
3. Zoho Sheet
Zoho Sheet is a cloud-based spreadsheet tool from Zoho that offers all the features of Microsoft Excel plus some unique ones. It boasts a clean and user-friendly interface that makes it easy for users to navigate and find what they need quickly.
With Zoho Sheet, multiple users can collaborate on a single sheet in real time. It has an AI-powered assistant, Zia, which can help with data analysis by providing insights and suggestions via pivot tables, charts, or graphs.
Features of Zoho Sheet include:
Pre-built templates and over 350 functions for efficient data organization
Converts data from an image or PDF into a spreadsheet by scanning
Data cleaning capabilities
Seamless integration with other Zoho apps
No offline editing capabilities
Takes time to open a spreadsheet
Zoho Sheet is free to use for everyone.
Smartsheet is a powerful, intuitive project management tool with a spreadsheet-style interface. Unlike Excel, Smartsheet offers extensive project management features such as Gantt charts, dependencies, and subtask hierarchies, thus going beyond traditional spreadsheets.
Its ability to integrate with popular tools and services like Google Workspace, Salesforce, and Microsoft 365 adds versatility.
Some key features of Smartsheet include:
Real-time collaboration and sharing capabilities
Automated workflows and alerts
Customizable templates for different project types
Interactive dashboard for tracking project progress and team performance
An app for both iOS and Android platforms for mobile access
Multiple views, including grid, calendar, and card view, for better task management
No time tracking features
Limited customization options for templates
Smart sheet offers one free plan and two paid options: Individual at $7 per month and Enterprise at $25 per month billed yearly.
Quip is a productivity suite from Salesforce that combines documents, spreadsheets, and chat into one seamless experience, eliminating the need for multiple separate applications.
Quip allows users to create and edit spreadsheets and communicate and collaborate directly within the document. This breaks down the barriers between data analysis and decision-making, enabling teams to work together more efficiently.
Some key features of Quip include:
Integration with Salesforce CRM and Slack
Available as Mobile apps
Task lists and deadlines to track progress on projects
Great for note-taking and document collaboration
Built-in task management features to keep teams on track
Multi-device synchronization for seamless workflow
No free plans are available
Quip offers a free trial for 30 days, after which users can choose from three different pricing plans: Quip Starter at $10 per user per month, Quip Plus at $25 per user per month, and Quip Advanced at $100 per user per month.
ClickUp is a comprehensive productivity platform designed to centralize all work and communication in one place, thus reducing the need for multiple disparate tools. It features an intuitive interface with various viewing options that adapt to different work styles.
This includes a List view, which resembles a traditional spreadsheet and provides an Excel-like experience for users. However, ClickUp goes beyond Excel with its robust features facilitating project management, team collaboration, task tracking, and time management.
Some key features of ClickUp include:
Different views (List, Board, Calendar, Box, etc.) for custom workflow
Integration with other tools, including Google Drive, Slack, and Zoom
More than 50 automation to avoid repetitive tasks
Inbuilt word processor for document creation
Offline access is available for desktop app users
Customizable templates and checklists
Not all views are available to users on mobile apps
Limited customization options for dashboards and reporting
ClickUp offers a free plan with limited features, while paid plans start at $7 per user per month and a Business plan at $12 per month.
7. WPS Office
WPS Office is a comprehensive office suite that includes a robust spreadsheet program. Like Excel, WPS Office's spreadsheet program offers a variety of functions for data manipulation, analysis, and visualization.
WPS Office also offers excellent file compatibility with Microsoft Office, allowing users to open, edit, and save Excel files quickly.
Its cloud-syncing capabilities ensure that your files are always up to date and available across all your devices, providing a level of convenience and mobility that few other spreadsheet tools can match.
Its features include:
Compatibility with Microsoft Excel, supporting .xls, .xlsx, and .et file formats.
Over 160 formulas and function shortcuts.
Supports freeze frames, pivot tables, table styles, and, sorting.
Cross-platform compatibility for easy access across devices
Customizable templates for different use cases
Runs on Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, and iOS platforms
Advanced features like pivot tables, sorting, and table styles
Limited functionality in the free version, with some features requiring a paid subscription
Free version has pop-up ads
WPS Office offers a free version with limited features, while paid plans start at $29.99 annually.
8. LibreOffice Calc
LibreOffice Calc is a free and open-source spreadsheet program in the LibreOffice suite. It offers a wide range of high-quality data processing tools. Calc is compatible with various file formats, including those used by Excel, and provides a deep set of tools for data analysis.
Being open-source, it has a highly active community that continually contributes to its improvement, ensuring it stays up-to-date with modern data management needs.
Key features of LibreOffice Calc include:
Compatibility with multiple file formats, including Excel's .xls and .xlsx
Advanced DataPilot technology that pulls in raw data from corporate databases
Natural language formulas allow users to type commands in plain English
Intuitive and user-friendly interface
Vast library of functions for data manipulation and analysis
Advanced features like DataPilot technology and natural language formulas
Not available on mobile devices
Macro recording has limited support
LibreOffice Calc is free as part of the LibreOffice suite, which includes other office programs such as Writer and Impress.
9. Apache OpenOffice Calc
Apache OpenOffice is a free and open-source office suite, including a spreadsheet component known as OpenOffice Calc.
OpenOffice Calc offers a range of features for creating and formatting spreadsheets, analyzing data, and creating graphs and charts. Its ability to work with several file formats, including Excel, makes it a versatile tool for data management tasks.
Here are some key features of Apache OpenOffice Calc:
Broad set of tools for creating complex spreadsheets
Comprehensive suite of statistical functions for data processing and evaluation
Array of graphics and charting tools for better data representation
Robust set of features for creating and manipulating spreadsheets
User interface can be overwhelming for first-time users
The development of new features and updates may be slow compared to other tools
Apache OpenOffice is free to use.
Airtable is a cloud-based spreadsheet-database hybrid offering a unique data organization and collaboration approach.
This platform goes beyond the capabilities of a typical spreadsheet, offering powerful functionalities like relational databases, automation, and integration with other popular applications.
Airtable is robust in features and extremely intuitive and user-friendly, making data organization and team collaboration much simpler and more efficient.
Key features include:
Visually appealing and user-friendly interface that makes data organization enjoyable
Offers a variety of views, including grid, calendar, Kanban, gallery, and form views
Provides automation to create custom workflows and streamline repetitive tasks
Integration with popular apps
Real-time collaboration and data sharing
Limited functionality in the free version, with some features only available in paid plans.
Can be expensive for large teams or agencies.
Airtable offers a variety of pricing plans, starting from a free version with limited features. Paid plans start at $20 per user per month, with a higher-tier plan for businesses at $46 monthly.
Say goodbye to cluttered spreadsheets and achieve superior organization with Teamwork.com
While Excel may be the most well-known and widely used spreadsheet tool, many alternatives offer unique features and capabilities for data management, from free and open-source programs to advanced, cloud-based platforms. The alternatives above provide users with various options for effectively organizing and analyzing their data.
Teamwork.com is a comprehensive solution for data management, offering integrated spreadsheets and project management tools to streamline collaboration and boost productivity.